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In Brief This Week: Saladax Biomedical; Meridian Bioscience; Quest Diagnostics; Metabolon, Syngenta

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb News) – Saladax Biomedical said this week that it plans to open a CLIA lab at its headquarters in Bethlehem, Pa. The firm has applied for approval from both the State of Pennsylvania and the federal government and is targeting a launch next year.

Saladax offers MyCare tests for individualized dose management of three cancer drugs: 5-fluorouracil, paclitaxel, and docetaxel. It has another 10 MyCare tests in development, it said, and plans to offer the tests through the CLIA lab.

Meridian Bioscience said that it is accelerating the distribution of its cash dividend of $.19 per share to Dec. 24 from its normal quarterly cash dividend paid in February. The dividend is payable to shareholders of record as of Dec. 14. The firm said that it is making this move "based on the likelihood of potential tax law changes and the pending increase of the federal tax rate on dividend income in 2013."

Meridian expects to pay its next regular quarterly cash dividend in May 2013.

Quest Diagnostics this week said that the specimen biorepository of its clinical trials business has received accreditation from the College of American Pathologists. The biorepository maintains de-identified tissue, blood, and urine samples, including molecular and genetic material.

Metabolon said this week that it has renewed a research agreement with Syngenta, under which it will continue to provide Syngenta broad access to its biochemical profiling technology for use in agricultural applications. Terms of the alliance weren't disclosed.

In Brief This Week is a Friday column containing news items that our readers may have missed during the week.

The Scan

Driving Malaria-Carrying Mosquitoes Down

Researchers from the UK and Italy have tested a gene drive for mosquitoes to limit the spread of malaria, NPR reports.

Office Space to Lab Space

The New York Times writes that some empty office spaces are transforming into lab spaces.

Prion Pause to Investigate

Science reports that a moratorium on prion research has been imposed at French public research institutions.

Genome Research Papers on Gut Microbe Antibiotic Response, Single-Cell RNA-Seq Clues to Metabolism, More

In Genome Research this week: gut microbial response to antibiotic treatment, approach to gauge metabolic features from single-cell RNA sequencing, and more.